Today is my stop on the Riley Blake Flannel tour. Our cat, Ed, is quite the character (aren't they all?) and I've been wanting to make him a personalized cat bed. Warning: I am not a professional pet photographer! :)
This bed can be flipped over and used 'upside down'; it's sort of like having two beds in one.
To make this pet bed you will need:
1 yard flannel fabric for 'top' (it's reversible so there is no clear top and bottom)
1 yard flannel fabric for 'bottom'
Scrap of coordinating fabric for two sets of letters
Small piece of Pellon 805 Wonder-Under, large enough to cover the appliqué
Coordinating color of thread for the appliqué
Pellon Pet Bed Insert, Small (20 x 30")
Sizzix Big Shot, standard cutting pads and BigZ Alphabet Set 4 dies - Fresh Blossoms OR
You can print or hand draw letters (in mirror image) on the paper side of the Wonder-Under and cut them out, which is what I did for years (see this post).
Prewash and iron all fabric before starting this project; I assume any well-loved pet bed will need to be frequently laundered!
Cut a 22 x 32" rectangle out of each piece of flannel. Right sides together, use a basting stitch to sew one long side together with a 1/2" seam allowance. Press seam open. Center the zipper upside down on top of the pressed seam. Also make sure there is an equal amount of fabric at the top and at the bottom of the zipper. Pin one side of the zipper and sew down the other side with a regular stitch length, as close to the teeth as possible without hitting them. Remove the pins, turn the corner at the end of the zipper and sew the other side down. You will wind up with a sewn rectangle around the zipper.
Flip the project and rip that basted seam out! Only remove the stitches over the zipper and inside the rectangle you just sewed. Pull out the remaining ripped threads, admire your newly installed zipper and set it aside.
Fuse the rough side of the Wonder-Under to the fabric for the letters, following manufacturer's instructions (they recommend pressing for ten seconds on a wool/silk setting so the glue doesn't get deactivated). If you're using a Big Shot, run it through the machine fabric side down or the letters will be backwards. If you're drawing the letters and cutting them out, make sure they're mirror image.
Cutting pad, die with blades up, fabric/Wonder-Under with fabric down, cutting pad. Crank away.
My letters are placed 5.5" from the bottom edge of both the top and bottom. In hindsight, I'm thinking that 4.5" might have been better. Your call! Center and arrange the letters, remove the paper backing and fuse. Do this for both sides of the pet bed if you would like to make it two-sided.
Appliqué the letters using coordinating thread. I generally breeze through appliqué and achieve smooth curves, but I wanted to try a new stitch here — one that is tighter and will hold up through repeated washings.
I chose a stitch that forced me to have the needle to the left of the letter and I'm used to the needle on the right. Driving on the wrong side of the road was an interesting challenge! Fortunately, the letters are wonky to begin with, as is Ed the Cat, so I didn't sweat it.
Right sides together, pin the perimeter of the bed together. Be sure to leave the zipper open a few inches at this point or you'll zip yourself out! Starting at the one end of the zipper, sew around the whole bed with 1/2" seam allowance, stopping at the other side of the zipper. Flannel frays, so zigzag stitching or serging the rough edges all the way around the bed will help.
Time to make the corners boxy. Fold one corner of the bed as shown so that the seams are lined up - you can feel that the bottom seam is directly under the one shown. Pin, and measure 2.5" up the seam with a quilting ruler and mark the spot. Turn the ruler and mark a straight line - using the 45 degree rule helps. Sew on the line you just drew. Do not cut yet. Repeat with the other three corners. Turn the cover right side out and test to ensure you're happy with the fit before turning it back inside out and cutting the corners off, 1/2" to the outside of the seam. Insert the pillow, zip it up and introduce it to your cat. Or leave it in a corner and let him/her discover it.
Here's Ed trying to look like he doesn't want the mouse. He is way too cool for that mouse.
Check out the other stops on the Flannel Blog Tour; there's some creative stuff going on here:
Final Post + Giveaway
Photographing pets is even harder than getting good pictures of children. Ed kept coming over to sniff the camera, sit on my lap, and of course attack the catnip mice. It took longer to take the photos than to make the bed itself! Here are some outtakes:
Have fun, and be sure to check out the giveaway that's going on at the end of the tour! Also, if you missed my post yesterday, I have a Cascade fabric giveaway going on through Monday of next week.